REXX - Updated 04.02.05

Easter sample

Someone noticed my sample REXX for calculating the date of Easter had gone missing in an ISP meltdown - (earlier meltdown, they had another and so far I think I've now lost the contributed Easter), and was considerate to contribute this one, easter. I rewrote my own Meeus (see below for references) Easter rexx easter.rexx.text after again doing a Regina build.

Regina Rexx

REXX blog. I got a little further with the Regina Rexx (3.3) implementation than the last time I looked at it (3.2). It had the same issues with the IBM Xlc compiler I had installed from here. I found that off this Ars Technica article. Some of the other build difficulties I had listed before seem absent. There were some OS/X release differences I bug reported to the SourceForge project. For 10.3 simply installing the 3.3 disk image did work just fine

Basically this was a experiment to see if java runtime execution of the static 'rexx' executable from my java application could be done by including it in the OS/X application bundle and running a (Greg Guerin type) prelude Unix script to add it's location to the 'path' environment variable. This was roughly the idea I had for an OS/X gcj build I had done. gcj proved to be too big to distribute but 'rexx' demonstrates the idea is at least sound.

I still have to dig in and do something useful with the bundled Rexx at some point.

Object Rexx

Interesting news off of the old protech automation mailing list I'm still on is that IBM has turned over Object Rexx as an open source project to RexxLA. Object Rexx seemed to be set to become the tool of choice for the distributed auotmation where I was once employed. Being the mainframe guy I used the Computer Associates (formerly Legent), vendor specific implemention of Rexx for their Ops/MVS product.

Anyhow, I've downloaded the Windows Object Rexx version and will probably do a little tinkering with that. Most likely seeing if it can be used in a similar way as Regina from my java application. I believe IBM put some time and effort into a decent set of Windows OS hooks that might save me figuring out how to do some Windows JNIDirect or other native coding.

NetRexx

Still of interest sometime would be Mike Cowlishaw's own java/REXX hybrid NetRexx.

Conclusion

From a language point of view my understanding is that Object Rexx is more an object oriented extension of standard Rexx, something like 'C++' or 'ObjectiveC' to 'C'. While NetRexx is a java implementation of Rexx with some java features. Object Rexx was an IBM product, while NetRexx is distributed by IBM I don't think it has been offered as a product.

A little more REXX related can currently be found here.

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